New Trends in Addiction Treatment
The American Heritage® Dictionary defines addiction (ə-dĭkˈshən) as:
- The compulsive physiological and psychological need for a habit-forming substance: a drug used in the treatment of heroin addiction.
- An instance of this: a person with multiple chemical addictions.
- The condition of being habitually or compulsively occupied with or involved in something.
When a habit is repeated, the brain will hard wire it into an automatic pathway. Stimulus (a thought) – Response (using). In stopping a habitual pattern and replacing it with a positive habit, new wiring can be established. On face value, this may seem easy but ask somebody deep in their addiction. Stopping a habitual pattern can have you climbing the walls!
Chemically, the body gets used to an addiction. The liver gears up for alcohol and works extra hard to break it down but when the substance isn’t there, it still pumps out enzymes causing nausea and stomach upset. Suddenly ceasing alcohol use can lead to seizures and convulsions if not medically intervened. No, stopping a substance on your own can be incredibly difficult, but not impossible. There are so many factors to ultimately stopping an addiction
that it is important to not play around with it. If you make the decision to stop, then stop. Go through detox if your usage has been severe and get ready for the real battle – the mental one.
Embrace Your Life
Mentally, as the thoughts begin to clear, what is left is a clear view of what you have been doing to your life. The problems that you pushed aside are now on your mind and the last thing that you want to deal with is dealing with your current life, the people that may have been hurt, and the responsibilities that face you. The overall picture seems overwhelming so what is important is breaking things down into incremental steps and simply focus on one problem at a time.
Years ago, when I started out as an Intern, I worked with clients who were HIV positive. In the mid-1990’s AZT – a
drug for HIV just came out and my clients have prescribed it. Many thought they were going to die from the disorder
and went on incredible vacations and buying sprees only to discover their immune system was improving. Soon our task became helping them pay down their debt – paycheck by paycheck.
Only as Strong as Our Emotions
We are only as strong as our emotions. In addiction treatment, the focus has become improving a person’s relationship with themselves. It is natural to beat ourselves up for our failures, but honestly, each person is doing the best that they can in each given moment. Can you learn from the past? If so, then you can let go of your attachment to beating yourself up. In that state you were in, that was the only thing you could have done at the time. Now you have new information and the key is running with it.
Spiritually, things are happening in your life for the evolution of your soul. When we focus on a problem and solve it, we evolve at the level of the soul. If not, the problem will continue to repeat itself until we deal with it. How many problems of yours happen over and over again? Befriend the addiction, talk with it, learn from it, and in doing so let it go. Your soul benefits in the process. This is just a brief overview of the process. Let us help you go through this journey.
For more information, call us at (425) 588-8438 to schedule a free one-hour consultation.